I think I lost my first hen...

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by MoonAngel12, Jul 25, 2011.

  1. MoonAngel12

    MoonAngel12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 5, 2009
    Central NC
    It's my fault really. With 3 kids under 4, I have been a total scatter brain lately. I have been letting my 5 chickens out in the evenings to take refuge from the heat in the shaded grassy areas... well, last night I forgot to close the doors. I realized at 3:30 this morning when I was up feeding my youngest (3 months) and heard our dogs barking. I woke DH up, handed off a very unhappy DD and went to investigate. Only 4 of my 5 chickens were on the roost. I didn't see anything out of the ordinary (no predators, blood, or feathers) so I thought maybe she just didn't make it back from free ranging that afternoon/evening. That is, until DH went to work this morning. He told me he would look around when the sun came up and he found a raccoon "treed" on top of our dogs' pen. Every time it tried to come down our two dogs would go nuts and send it back up. We're going to get a trap from his cousins hopefully and try and catch it... I figure if nothing else they can kill it or use it to train their dogs (they go 'coon hunting a lot). DH shot it a few times with a pellet gun, but it wasn't powerful enough to do any serious damage that we could tell (I thought about getting a .22 but figured the pellet would be enough... darn. Live and learn I guess). I have had my chickens for 2 ears now and this is the first incident (aside from a HUGE rat snake stealing eggs). I'm bummed, and also nervous now since we don't have the most secure coop (DH built it for me for Valentines Day a couple years ago... he researched quite a bit, but I have since learned so much from this site that we could have taken into consideration for it). I was planning on picking up my 5 other chickens today from my friend, but I really don't want to do that until I know that this raccoon is gone and no longer a threat. This all based on the assumption that it was in fact the raccoon that got her. Seems like a pretty big coincidence, but I was under the impression they left a trail of blood and/or feathers - some form of evidence.
     
  2. Ole rooster

    Ole rooster Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 25, 2011
    Milner, Georgia
    Remember when you shoot it with anything not intended to kill, some folks take that as abuse. Not that it really matters to me but if I were going to shoot anything and not intending to kill, I would use rock salt. It they didn't learn from that then a .223 to the head.
     
  3. MoonAngel12

    MoonAngel12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 5, 2009
    Central NC
    Quote:He was trying to kill it, but either isn't a very good shot, or it just wasn't powerful enough... not sure which. I thought the pellet would be enough for a smaller animal at a fairly close range (it was the second most powerful one they sold - the one above it was more equal to a .22 in power so I thought it would be enough). I'm not a gun expert by any means though... but we just had a teenager in the news that got killed by a BB gun so it's possible for something low power to do some damage. He got away after 2 shots I think? It's not our intention to abuse or make it suffer at all... if you knew me you would understand that. That's my one hesitation posting on forums, and it's hard not to get totally defensive.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011

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